Can Chiropractic Offer Degenerative Disc Disease Treatment?

Degenerative disc disease is a common condition, especially for the aging population. There is no cure, but chiropractic care and physical therapy can reduce symptoms and help you return to many of your previous activities.

Seek chiropractic care as soon as possible to receive a definitive diagnosis and learn more about how a chiropractor can provide pain management and improve your overall condition.

What Is Degenerative Disc Disease? Can a Chiropractor Diagnose It?

Can Chiropractic Offer Degenerative Disc Disease Treatment

Degenerative disc disease is the gradual deterioration of the intervertebral discs in the spinal column. These discs are the cushions between the vertebrae. They provide flexibility and shock absorption for the back and neck. The discs may become less functional as people age, leading to pain, stiffness, and other symptoms.

Some causes of degenerative disc disease include age, genetics, acute injuries, and chronic use injuries.

The symptoms of this condition could include:

  • Pain
  • Loss of flexibility and decreased range of motion
  • Numbness and tingling in the extremities
  • Stiffness

Diagnosis typically requires:

  • A medical history
  • Physical exam
  • Medical imaging, such as X-rays, MRI, and CT scans
  • Ruling out other conditions that cause similar symptoms

While there is no cure for degenerative disc disease, there are treatments that ease symptoms and improve quality of life. Seeing a chiropractor for a personalized treatment plan is a good option.

Treatments Chiropractors Can Provide to Address Degenerative Disc Disease

Chiropractors generally provide holistic, non-invasive treatments for back injuries and spinal conditions. Each patient receives a personalized treatment plan that incorporates chiropractic adjustments with physiotherapy. For degenerative disc disease, the treatment plan could include:

  • Various Adjustment Techniques: Chiropractors use spinal adjustments to improve alignment, enhance mobility, and reduce pain. This requires them to apply controlled force to the affected areas.
  • Spinal Mobilization: Chiropractors use careful, gentle movements of the spinal joints to increase range of motion and reduce stiffness.
  • Spinal Decompression Therapy: Also known as traction, spinal decompression therapy stretches the spinal joints apart, relieving pressure on the discs and nerves.
  • Physical Therapy: Chiropractors often prescribe a physiotherapy plan focusing on strengthening and rebuilding the muscles supporting the spine. This treatment makes the spine more stable, reduces pain, and improves functioning.
  • Additional Therapies to Manage Symptoms: Your chiropractor may prescribe additional therapies to help you manage symptoms and improve blood flow to the area. This care could include massage therapy, myofascial release, and Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) unit therapy.

With a personalized treatment plan, your chiropractor can provide the necessary treatments to manage your symptoms, stopping degenerative disc disease from limiting your mobility, improving spinal function, and enhancing your quality of life.

What Is the Prognosis for Degenerative Disc Disease With Chiropractic Management?

Degenerative disc disease is a chronic condition. Chiropractic care can help you manage your symptoms effectively, but you will likely need ongoing care and therapies. In addition to seeing your chiropractor regularly, you may require physical therapy, pain-management medications, or lifestyle changes to address a worsening condition.

Chiropractic treatment cannot reverse the degeneration of your discs. However, it can significantly ease symptoms and allow you to return to most or all of your previous activities. Of course, the severity of the condition and your overall health play a role, too.

In general, patients often experience positive outcomes from chiropractic care for this condition. Such outcomes include:

  • Pain Relief: Many people experience a significant reduction in pain after spinal adjustments, soft tissue therapies, and other chiropractic treatments. This treatment leads to less chronic pain and reduced disability.
  • Improved Mobility: Chiropractic care can increase the range of motion in the spine, allowing patients to perform daily activities with greater ease, including getting around and managing their own care.
  • Better Functionality: Strengthening and stabilizing physical therapy exercises enhance the overall functioning of the spine and stabilize its support structures, leading to fewer symptoms and overall better health.
  • Avoiding Invasive Procedures: Chiropractors provide a non-invasive alternative to surgical treatment, which carries much higher risks and a longer recovery time.

How Does the Chiropractic Treatment Plan Work for Degenerative Disc Disease?

When you first visit a chiropractor for your symptoms, you will undergo an intake exam that will include a health history, physical exam, and medical imaging. Through this process, your doctor will diagnose your condition, determine your needs, and prepare a unique plan based on your individual needs.

You may begin treatment the same day. This treatment plan will likely include the following:

  • Chiropractic care, including adjustments, decompression, and more
  • Physical therapy to strengthen and support your spine
  • Additional therapies to help manage symptoms and encourage healing

With every visit, your doctor and therapists will assess and reassess your condition. They can alter your treatment plan as necessary to ensure you continue to make progress and reach your goals. This treatment is not always linear, so you may need additional adjustments, a change in the intensity of therapy exercises, or other alterations to ensure your plan best meets your needs.

Once you meet your treatment goals, your doctor will schedule regular follow-up examinations to ensure you do not need additional care or support. We aim to treat underlying conditions and prevent future injuries for most patients. However, since degenerative disc disease is a chronic condition, you should expect to need some future care and support from your chiropractor. Regular follow-ups ensure this happens in a timely manner before your symptoms cause debilitating pain or stiffness.

If you have symptoms of degenerative disc disease or another painful spinal condition, let our chiropractors examine you. We provide effective, proven treatments for many back and neck ailments.

Call the Naples Community Injury Center for Your Initial Intake Exam

At Naples Community Injury Center, our team has over 60 years of combined experience treating degenerative disc disease and other spinal column disorders. We can provide treatment plans and therapies to help our patients manage symptoms, recover from injuries, and prevent ongoing problems.

We are accepting new patients at our Naples, Marco Island, and Estero locations. Call us now with questions or to schedule your initial intake exam. Contact us by dialing our number today.